Never Kiss a Wolf(12)

By: Eliza Gayle

"So I went into his cabin before anyone else could and stole the maps he collected and all of his notes about the outside world. It’s the information I used to make my escape."

"That's crazy, babe."

"You have no idea." Her voice lowered again. "But you should know that I'm not exactly normal. Mia says I don't know how to filter my words. My past makes me aggressive."

"Who is Mia?"

"Mia Abrams. She's the Itana."

More and more of the puzzle pieces were beginning to fall in place. The Itan and his Itana had to know Lily's history. "She's the reason they let you stay in Grayslake?"

"Yes, she is. And I love her for it. I don't exactly fit in here, but thanks to Mia the shifters here treat me with kindness."

"No, they treat you with kindness because you are a good person. You're just a little rough around the edges."

Both Greer and Lily whirled around at the female voice. He shoved his mate behind him and prepared for the unexpected.

"How did you get in here?" he growled.

The woman put a hand on her hip and cocked it out to the side while holding up a small object in the other. "Duh. I have a key."

"Mia! What are you doing here?" Lily shoved her way around him and raced into the other woman's now outstretched arms.

"I had to come after Ty told me about your adventure today."

"He's pretty angry with me. I would have come see you, but he said I had to stay here until he decided on my punishment."

"Excuse me?" Greer took several steps forward and the Itana shot him a sharp look that made him stop in his tracks.

"What happened today was a huge infraction and the Itan takes his rules very seriously."

"But she didn't—"

"She did." She said to him before turning her attention solely to his mate. "So tell me, Lily. What happened? I need something to take back to Ty that will make him see reason."

"I overheard people talking about two men in town looking for a woman. I assumed it was my family looking for me and I panicked."

"Bless your heart, baby." Mia soothed Lily with the stroke of her hand up and down her arm. "I can see why you got so upset."

"I'm sorry," she said. "I didn't mean to break the rules."

"Of course you didn't and Ty knows that. We just gotta let him calm down before we approach him. I heard a few people swear they saw hair coming out of your arms and face. So he's out convincing people it wasn't what they thought. It's easy on a rainy day for weird shadows to pass over any number of things."

This little love fest between the two women made Greer roll his eyes. He didn't like being cut off when he had something to say. He also didn't like the idea that Lily was having trouble fitting in at Grayslake. The people here were friendly, if not exactly welcoming.

Taking her back to Tennessee could make matters worse for her. She'd been through so much and taking her back where she was certain to run up against prejudices would not bode well for an aggressive bear.

"I know what you're thinking," Mia mouthed so that Lily couldn't see her.

"I doubt that," he said.

Mia tried to say something else, but he had to ignore her. He pulled Lily away from the other woman and back into his space. Her fresh scent filled his head and the wolf rumbled its appreciation.

"You don't have to stay here. There are other options. Places where I can keep you safe."

"Where you live?" Mia asked. "Are there bears there? She needs a clan."

"After what she's told me I'm not sure she needs anymore of her own kind." He tried to keep the contempt from his voice and failed.

Lily drew back her head and met his gaze. "Don't get me wrong. I love having my freedom, but being part of a clan keeps the bear settled most of the time."

"Your bear's not settled now," he countered. "And the way the Itana showed up here to prevent anymore problems says more than words ever could. They're worried about you. She's worried about you."

Lily shook her head. "No. No. She's on my side."

"I am," Mia agreed.

"I don't doubt you want to help her. But that doesn't stop the Itan or the Enforcer from doing whatever they feel is necessary to protect the clan as a whole."

Lily looked back and forth between the Itana and him with unease. "This is getting out of hand." She looked at Mia. "You know I mean no harm. But the fear that my family will one day come for me is real."

"I know. And as a member of our clan, we'll protect you. You will not have to go back."

"What will the Itan do to her for today? And what if it happens again?"